Fifty cents won't buy much these days.
Generally you can't get a soda out of a machine for that. You might be able to buy a bouncy ball out of those candy machine or maybe a decorative plate at a garage sale.
However, 50 cents a week can do so much for the McPherson County community through a donation to the United Way.
Last year, the United Way of McPherson County raised $200,000, but it fell short of its $225,000 fundraising goal. As a result, United Way could not fully fund all of its agency's $222,000 in requests.
Anne Kirchner, United Way director, said new donors will need to be brought on board to make the agency's goal this year.
Goals for this year include increasing the donor pool with eight new employee campaigns, 16 new business donors at the $250 level or higher and 200 new individual donors at the $25 level or higher. For businesses, the gift would amount to about $5 per week.
For the individual donors, a $25 donation breaks down to $1 per two-week pay period or 50 cents per week. This could be one less cup of coffee or soda per week. It could mean setting aside the spare change in your pocket.
Two quarters a week is such a small gift for such a large benefit to the community.
The United Way supports the following local agencies: American Red Cross, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Boy Scouts of America, The Children's Center, CASA: A Voice for Children, Child Start, Circles of McPherson County, Girl Scouts of the Kansas Heartland, McPherson County Council on Aging, McPherson Family Life Center, McPherson Family YMCA, McPherson Special Olympics, Meals on Wheels, Sexual Assault/Domestic Violence Center, Salvation Army, and United Cerebral Palsy of Kansas.
The United Way also collaborates with other agencies on the Annual Letter Carriers' Food Drive, Angel Tree Program, 2-1-1 Assistance Hotline, McPherson Summer Lunch Program, Free Discount Prescription Card Program, Lindsborg Summer Food Service Program and Preschool Scholarships.
Fifty cents can:
• Give an opportunity to a child to be a Scout.
• Help the Red Cross provide live-saving blood and disaster relief.
• Promote fitness in youth and adults at the YMCA
• Help a family in poverty learn how to budget or assist a single parent realize a dream to go back to school through Circles of McPherson County.
• Provide a struggling family with education and counseling
• Provide food to a home-bound senior through Meals on Wheels.
• Provide an advocate for an abused child in court through CASA.
• Provide a child with a scholarship to go to preschool
• Give sports opportunities for disabled athletes through Special Olympics
• Help a victim of sexual or domestic violence
Page 2 of 2 - Although United Way is a national organization, those coordinating the fundraising live in our community, and all the money raised here stays here.
The United Way is trying to take many drops of water and organize them into swelling wave.
With just two quarters, you can't do much alone. You might end up with a house full of bouncy balls.
However, if every person in McPherson County donated at least that 50 cents per week to the campaign, the United Way would raise more than triple its goal for the year.
Be part of the wave. Join the United Way in keeping the McPherson County a great place to live.
Pledge cards are available at 306 N. Main St., McPherson, KS 67460.
If your company does not have an employee campaign, you can be billed monthly, quarterly or semi-annually.
You can donate in the following ways:
• Credit card or PayPal online at www.unitedwaymcpherson.org
• An automatic debit to a checking or saving account.
For more information, call 620-241-5152.